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MASA 2009 Fall Conference: Expanding the Circle of Influence. High Performance Green School Buildings Help the environment and redirect utility costs. High Performance (HP) Green Building. Is one that, during its life-cycle:

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high performance hp green building
High Performance (HP) Green Building

Is one that, during its life-cycle:

  • Reduces energy, water and material resource use and the generation of waste
  • Improves indoor environmental quality
  • Improves impacts of the building on human health and the environment
  • Increases the use of environmentally preferable products
  • Increases reuse and recycling opportunities
  • Integrates systems in the building

As defined by the Congressional Research Service High Performance Green Buildings Act of 2007


U.S. Green Building Council

  • A non-profit organization committed to sustainable buildings started in ’93
  • Over 14,200 organizations involved across the building industry
  • Over 3.2 billion sq. ft. of building space are involved with the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™
building blocks of hp green school
Building Blocks of HP Green School

Enhanced Academic Outcomes

Reduce Utility Costs

Building A Learning Lab

Save ThePlanet

lighting and learning


Students in well day-lit spaces progressed

20% faster in math & 26% faster in reading

Lighting and Learning

Appropriate lighting

has been proven to:

Improve Cognitive Learning

Reduce Off Task Behavior

Foster Higher Student Achievement

creating thermal comfort


14 studies found that temperature control showed productivity improvements from 0.5% - 15%

Creating (Thermal) Comfort

Teachers emphasized the importance of having

the ability to control the temperature of their

space as a part of their ability to perform

Performance Zones:

68° - 74° Fahrenheit

40% - 75% Humidity

impacts of acoustics


15–50% of

consonants are lost

in rooms without

sound absorbing


Impacts of Acoustics

Noise Levels Effect:


Verbal Interaction

Application of Learning

Noise Levels Increase:

Stress Levels

Blood Pressure

Feelings of Helplessness

indoor air quality


The U.S. General Accounting

Office has found that 15,000

schools suffer from poor Indoor

Air Quality, affecting more than 8 million children or 1 out of 5 children in America’s schools.

Indoor Air Quality

A Growing Number of Studies Link Educational

Achievement and Student Performance to the

Quality of the Air in Schools.

indoor air quality1


17 separate studies all found positive health impacts from improved indoor air-quality, ranging from 13.5% to 87% improvement.

Indoor Air Quality

IF poor air quality leads to unhealthy students & teachers.

THEN unhealthy students & teachers cannot

perform as well as healthy ones which

EQUALS higher absenteeism.

geothermal vs traditional hvac


Geothermal vs. Traditional HVAC

A study by the EPA showed that GeoExchange

systems have:

  • Lowest Life-Cycle Cost
  • Lowest Impact on Our Environment
  • Highest Customer Satisfaction
geothermal vs traditional hvac1


Geothermal vs. Traditional HVAC

If the nation’s schools converted to GeoExchange,

we could reduce oil imports by

61 million barrels annually.

Geothermal is very

competitive on initial costs

and lower lifecycle costs than

most HVAC systems with savings of 25-50%

on energy consumption

lighting enhanced bulbs


Lighting - Enhanced Bulbs

Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs use about 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer and produce 75% less heat.

T8 Fluorescent Lamps use 40% less energy than T12 lamps and have a cooler and quieter operation. Replacement costs typically recouped within two years.

Commercial LED lighting products use at least 80-90% less energy, lasts 35 times longer than incandescent lighting and produces virtually no heat.

balancing light and daylight


Balancing Light and Daylight

Provides biological stimulation for hormones that regulate body systems and moods

Provides opportunities for natural ventilation

Offsets part of the electric lighting load

Reduces cooling requirements

lighting controls


Lighting - Controls

Lighting controls can help save energy and extend the

life of lamps and ballasts

Lighting controls will help reduce energy by:

  • Reducing power used during the peak demand period
  • Reducing the number of hours/year that the lights are on
  • Reducing internal heat gains by cutting down lighting use
  • Allowing occupants to lower light levels and save energy
lighting levels


Lighting Levels

Add Roof Monitors & Windows

Distribute Light Deep into Spaces

Brighten Gyms with Clerestory Windows

Utilize Light Shelves

Consider Fiber Optic Lighting

Add Skylights Throughout

water conservation


Water Conservation

Basic efficiency measures can reduce a school’s water use by at least 30%

Green school’s reduce

water consumption by

using efficient technology

and fixtures both inside

and outside the

school building.

water conservation fixtures


Water Conservation Fixtures

Dual-action 1.1 / 1.6 gallon flush toilet use 30%

less water compared to conventional 1.6-gallon


Low-flow faucet aerators can reduce water

consumption by as much as 50%, and reduce

your energy cost of heating, transporting and

processing the water.

water conservation1


7-8% of US energy consumption is for moving or treating water.

Energy costs make up 80% of the typical water bill.

High Performance Buildings Magazine, Summer 2008

Water Conservation

Achieves direct savings for the building/district

Reduces usage and lowers energy production

causing reductions in GHG and ODP

Reduces embodied energy required

to deliver, transport and treat water

reducing electricity loads computers


Reducing Electricity Loads: Computers

If you shut off one computer each night, you’ll save an average of $90 in electricity/computer per year.

The DOE recommends powering off:

Inactive monitors after 20 minutes

Processors after 2 hours

reducing electricity loads vending


Reducing Electricity Loads: Vending

If the 4 million vending machines

(and glass front coolers) in the US were

equipped with EnergyMiser would save

15 billion kWf of electricity

The Equivalent of

2 Power Plants!

reducing electricity loads renewables


Reducing Electricity Loads: Renewables

Wind, Solar & Geothermal

Our ability to reduce our demand on conventional

energy sources helps also our ability to reduce

green house gas and therefore our ability to have a positive effect on the environment.

science options from green features


Science Options from Green Features
  • Interactive Monitoring Systems
  • Energy Storage & Conversion
  • Water Conservation
make buildings systems visible


Make Buildings Systems Visible
  • Deconstruct Building Elements
  • Natural Ventilation
  • Visible Mechanical Controls
site elements educate on sustainability


Site Elements Educate on Sustainability

Green features may also be incorporated into school design as teaching tools.

Students often learn better when abstract concepts are demonstrated to them visually.

integrating building and curriculum


Integrating Building and Curriculum

HP green school buildings provide a great backdrop

for environmental curriculum.

Science: Energy Principles / Conservation of Energy / Heat Transfer / Water Cycles / Plant Life / Atmosphere / Weather

Math: Conversion of Units / Volume Calculations / Optimization of Temperatures / Calculations of HVAC Efficiencies / Carbon Footprint Calculations

Economics:Impact of Fuel Costs / Green Building Break Even Points / International Commerce / Net Carbon Market Trading

Social Science: Cultural Attitudes Toward Consumption / Environmental Awareness / Energy and Environmental Impacts on Social Systems

Independent Research Projects

environmental stewardship


Environmental Stewardship
  • Recycle Centers
  • Environmental Clubs
  • Green Teams
  • Energy Round Tables
reduce green house gas emissions


Reduce Green House Gas Emissions


  • Water saves 8% energy
  • Energy use thru building system choices
  • Gas consumption thru vehicle selection
  • Site maintenance thru plants/natural look
  • Carbon Footprint
stormwater quality quantity


Stormwater: Quality & Quantity
  • Are enhanced by …
  • Green Roofs
  • Rain Gardens
  • Bioswales
green policies


Green Policies

Contribute to a better environment thru…

  • Green Cleaning
  • Eco-Purchasing Programs
  • Buy Local
  • Sustainable Office Practices
green school advocacy committee gsac
Green School Advocacy Committee (GSAC)

Mission: To bring awareness of the benefits of “green schools”

Aim: Ensure green schools for all children within a generation.

GSAC Helps spread the word about benefits of “green schools” to Boards, Teachers and Parents.

Work at state and federal level to encourage sustainable schools and funding for special initiatives.

cost of green schools
Cost of Green Schools

Over the life of a building, costs related to operations are more than three times higher than initial construction costs.

Potential % Increase by Level

Certified 0%

Silver 0-2%

Gold 2-5%

Platinum 0-15%

The potential small increase in construction costs for a green school is paid back multiple times over the life of the building.

mdleg energy office
MDLEG: Energy Office

The Rebuild Michigan Program

Assists public K-12 schools, colleges, universities, local governments and public housing authorities with improving the energy efficiency of their buildings.

This program offers:

Technical Assistance

Attractive Financing Information

Eligible public institutions can make improvements with little or no upfront capital



USGBC Green School Advocates:

Detroit Regional Chapter:

Daniel H. Jacobs, NCARB, LEED AP


Western Michigan Chapter:Jack Timmer